Nothing is more depressing than having a vision or dream and the ending result is one of financial loss, dignity despaired and failure. Been there–done that and got the T-shirt. To lose ground and find yourself a million miles behind is not the greatest line for a bestseller but sometimes we lose and sometime we gain.
Risk is involved in every dream and causes us to shrink back and not reach for the vision we have in our heart. Passion, dreams and visions come short of reaching the high point of the mountain–there must be a secret formula or method. We read books, follow blogs, create goals and scan the internet for the key to riches, fame and success only to meet with failure and desperation.
What would happen if we didn’t change the process but absolutely changed the foundation of our vision? Want to grow a church? Want to start a ministry? Want to write a book? Want to begin a nonprofit organization? Whatever the vision is we must begin with the foundation if we will get the process to have the preferred outcome.
When you build a house, you must never ignore how important the foundation is to the safety and proper construction of the house. You can pick out the most amazing lighting; choose beautiful cabinets and have a stunning floor plan but without the correct and proper foundation the house is a shambles and decreases in value.
We all agree the greater the vision the greater the influence–the power of persuasion increases with an exponential vision. Let’s take a look at Habakkuk 2:1-4 on establishing a vision.
Habakkuk 2:1-3 I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will watch to see what he will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved. And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will come; it will not tarry.
VISION BEGINS WITH FAITHFULNESS IN MY ESTABLISHED WORK OR CURRENT MINISTRY
Habakkuk 2:1 I will stand upon my watch and set me upon the tower…
Work begins now. A visionary is established under accountability. A man or woman with vision will work hard. They aren’t the people who are looking for something else to do so they may get out of the trap they feel they are in. Just because a man or woman doesn’t want to work where they are now isn’t reason enough to quit and pursue their far flung ideas. These are tough words but we must stick with what we are doing if we are to see the vision become clearer into focus.
IF VISIONARIES AREN’T WORKING NOW
IT IS DOUBTFUL THEIR VISION WILL WORK LATER
You may be in a struggle right now. You may not like your home, your church or your job but stay with it. God has placed you in the fertile soul of discomfort not to move you but to speak to you. The only way some people listen to God is when they are uncomfortable.
LISTEN TO GOD’S VOICE – WAIT FOR HIM TO SPEAK TO YOU
Habakkuk 2:1 …and will watch to see what he will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved.
Visions are born in the moments of prayer. Spending time in the presence of God will settle your unsettledness. God will speak in the midnight when you thought it was all over. Being uncomfortable is a passing feeling but being in the presence of God comes a developed peace. God given visions are worlds apart from a self-given vision. God knows me better than I know myself and God gives greater visions I couldn’t accomplish on my own.
While starting a youth camp in Texas the need was great – $1000 was in the bank account and over $20,000 would be needed within five days. Not Five months but five days. The vison was God given, the peace was heaven sent and on Friday more than enough funds were collected to pay the debt and that happened for over 23 years. Having God speak assures us of the outcome.
A GOD GIVEN VISION
Birthed in Prayer
Proceeded by Peace
Financed by Faith
Verified by His Word
WRITE THE VISION
Habakkuk 2:2 And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.
Let’s cut to the chase – the clearer the vision is written the clearer the outcome will be. Write the vision clearly, spell it out specifically and put it on the calendar.
A VISION THAT IS NOT WRITTEN IS NOT A VISION – IT’S JUST AN IDEA
Pull out a piece of paper and begin be creating a list of definite questions, purposeful direction and daily interaction. Simplicity is my code word – the flow of words and idea works best in the arena of simplicity; personally I use these five questions:
WHO is involved? Who might help and who may be a contact person?
WHAT will it cost? What does it involve? What amount of time will I personally devote to it each day? What quote or scripture drives me each day? What devotional am I reading right now?
WHEN will I schedule it? When will it appear on my calendar and my daily worksheet? When is the finish date? (The finish date is extremely important even if you have to guess the approximate time of completion. If there is not a due date then the vision will drag on without accomplishment).
WHERE will I work on it? (Having a go to place is absolutely a must). Where might I find support? Where may I go for answers? Where do I go to keep the dream fresh on my mind? Where will I post a picture or visual stimulator to keep the dream alive?
WHY is this important to me? “Why” is the driving force of your vision. Take some time and seriously and quietly pursue the answer – why do I want to accomplish this vision? Of all the questions to answer this is ultimately the make or break of your vision. If vision casting the “why” must be dramatically, indefinitely and consistently repeated to those following.
After you have written the vision down “make it plain upon the tables.” Chart it or picture it and place it in a prominent location where the “visual vision” is seen often. There will be plenty of excuses and many good reasons why you can’t go on but a “visual vision” creates excitement, brings determination and draws out the best in you; … that he may run that readeth it.
A VISUAL VISON IS THE REMINDER TO MAKE IT HAPPEN
When Habakkuk received the Word from God to “make it plain upon the tables” we could say, “engrave it in stone.” A permanent fixture, not to be easily removed, promoted the vision every day when Habakkuk passed by the “engraved vision.” When the vision becomes your vision it will be as concrete as the “visual vision.” A “Visual Vision” will be the motivating force giving you energy and vitality “…that he may run that readeth it.” Oswald Chambers, in My Utmost for His Highest, writes, “Our reach must exceed our grasp.” Nothing can replace a visual reminder to spur us on to action.
WATCH IT BLOOM
Waiting and watching can be agonizing. Waiting for the phone to ring with a book proposal being approved. Patiently diving into writing page after page. Weeks and months seem to drag by as people in the congregation slowly begin to accept and implement the vision. God knows that patience is need as God speaks to Habakkuk in chapter two and verse 3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
Planting flowers in late winter or early spring, praying the late frost away, preparing the soil, and watering on dry days seem to be mundane and a deterrent to progress but let the rain do its thing, let the sun do its thing, let the warmer spring days do its thing and the flowers will bloom.
WAITING FOR MATURATION IS TIME WELL SPENT
There may be days of failure but press on, nights of fear and anxiety but press on anyway. There will be days you want to quit but press on. There will be days you will think, “What difference will it make,” but press on. Let the night turn to day, watch the flowers bloom through the process of rain, sun and soil, watch the project rise and give it to mature.
There is a time that is appointed for the vision to become reality. Many have turned away right at the moment of surprise. Failing to see intentionality blend with time for an overwhelming response to your efforts combined with God’s calendar, “for an appointed time.” It is coming. It will show up. It will happen.
Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author. This post should not be construed as medical, legal or counseling.